Plan your visit
The Royal Festival Hall is open, but the Hayward Gallery, Queen Elizabeth Hall and Purcell Room are closed for now.
The health of our visitors and staff remains our top priority. To find out about the measures we're taking to keep you safe, see below.
Out of respect for our staff and visitors, we ask that you continue to wear face coverings inside our venues. You can collect an exemption badge from the entrance if you are unable to wear a mask.
We ask that you continue to wear face coverings inside our buildings. There's plenty of hand sanitiser available to keep your hands clean.
Here's what you need to know before you visit.
We’re following the official government guidance on working safely during coronavirus. Measures we’ve introduced so far include:
- Staggered arrival times to reduce crowding
- Reduced visitor numbers
- Clear signage and one-way systems
- Removal of some seating and changes to access
- Hand sanitiser stations
- Regular and thorough cleaning of touch points
- 100% fresh air throughout the Royal Festival Hall and regular CO2 readings
- We strongly recommend face coverings for ages 11+
- Going cash-free
We’ll continue to review and manage any risks and respond to any changes in the guidance, keeping our staff trained and up to date as we go.
Reduced visitor numbers
We’re staggering arrival times so that you can easily keep a safe distance from others and enjoy a crowd-free visit.
When you book for the Hayward Gallery, you’re given a time slot to make sure that we keep to a safe number of people within the gallery.
Keep others safe
Out of respect for our staff and visitors, we ask that you continue to wear face coverings inside our venues. You can collect an exemption badge from the entrance if you are unable to wear a mask
Please, stay at home if you have symptoms of illness such as a cough, sore throat or fever or have been in contact in the past 14 days with someone who has coronavirus. You can email us up to 24 hours before the event to refund or exchange your ticket.
During your visit
To keep yourself and others safe, please:
- Wear a face covering
- Follow our one-way system
- Wherever possible, keep a safe distance from others
- Use the hand sanitiser provided
We ask that you collect an exemption badge from the entrance if you are unable to wear a mask.
- if you are a child under the age of 11
- if you can't put on, wear or remove it because of a physical or mental illness, impairment or disability
- if putting on, wearing or removing it will cause you severe distress
- if you are providing assistance to someone who relies on lip reading to communicate
Socially distanced seating
Following the change in government guidelines, all events from Saturday 7 August 2021 will go ahead without social distancing.
We continue acting in accordance with government guidelines, which are subject to change – please check the event page before you visit.
The Royal Festival Hall is open to all for access to the Level 2 foyers, Level 2 toilets, the National Poetry Library, Southbank Centre Shop and Riverside Terrace Cafe at the following times:
Tuesday – Thursday, 12 noon – 8pm*
Friday and Saturday, 12 noon – 10.30pm*
Sunday, 12 noon – 8pm*
Closed on Monday
*Closing times may vary on event days. Access to the Royal Festival Hall foyers is restricted to ticket holders from 90 minutes before events begin.
Our address is: Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, London SE1 8XX.
- The nearest tube and train stations within 5 – 7 minutes walk are Waterloo (Northern, Bakerloo, Jubilee and Waterloo & City lines) and Embankment (District & Circle lines).
- There are also lots of bus routes with stops 2 – 5 minutes from our venues.
For more information on getting here by road, rail or river:
Pre-booking online is essential. Entry is by pre-booked ticket only. Check our website on the day for returns.
There’s no need to print your e-ticket – just show your phone to our Visitor Assistants on entry.
If you don't receive your e-ticket
Check your spam folder for an email from [email protected] If you don’t receive your e-ticket within a few hours of booking, please get in touch.
Unable to attend
If you’re unable to attend your booking, email us before the event to return your ticket for a credit voucher, valid for one years from date of issue. We can't accept returns after the date of your booking.
Please, stay at home if you have symptoms of illness such as a cough, sore throat or fever or have been in contact in the past 10 days with someone who has coronavirus.
Toilets, including accessible toilets, are open on Level 2 of the Royal Festival Hall.
The Royal Festival Hall cloakroom is closed in order to reduce face-to-face contact. You won’t be able to bring any bags over 40 x 25 x 25cm into the Royal Festival Hall, so please leave large bags at home.
There may be short queues to enter our buildings, events and exhibitions. If you are not able to queue or need further assistance, our Visitor Assistants are here to help you.
We welcome wheelchair users and guide companion dogs.
Our Access Scheme
If you have any access requirements, please sign up to our Access Scheme for discounts, wheelchair spaces, dedicated seats and free companion tickets. You can also join our mailing list to get news about accessible events and exhibitions.
Entering the Royal Festival Hall
For level access to the Royal Festival Hall, please use the external lift near the Artists' Entrance on Southbank Centre Square, Belvedere Road, to Level 2, and enter via Riverside Terrace. All floors are accessible from the main foyer.
Blue Badge holders and those with access requirements can be dropped off on the Queen Elizabeth Hall Slip Road off Belvedere Road (the road between the Royal Festival Hall and the Hayward Gallery).
There are four Blue Badge parking spaces available for visitors located on the Queen Elizabeth Hall Slip Road. Spaces are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, and are free to use. You must display your Blue Badge as you enter the site. Vehicles that do not display a Blue Badge are refused entry.
Blue Badge parking at National Theatre
Alternative parking for Blue Badge holders visiting the Southbank Centre can be found at the National Theatre car park (330 metres). If you are visiting the Hayward Gallery, just take your badge and car park ticket to the Ticket Desk in the gallery foyer for validation before you leave.
Please note: on Sunday when the National Theatre building is closed there is no step-free access from the car park.
Alternative parking is available nearby at the APCOA Cornwall Road Car Park (490 metres), subject to charges.
Blue Badge parking at APCOA Cornwall Road
Alternative parking for Blue Badge holders visiting the Southbank Centre can also be found at the South Bank Car Park – APCOA Cornwall Road Car Park. Just take your badge and car park ticket to the parking attendant office at the entrance to the car park for validation before you leave.
A drop-off point at the Royal Festival Hall (30 metres) has been created for visitors who are unable to walk from alternative car parks.
Your privacy and NHS Test and Trace
If you visit us when our venues reopen, we will collect your data and some information about you, so that we can take part in the NHS Test and Trace service and help prevent the spread of COVID-19. The government has asked organisations to do this in order to keep our visitors and employees safe.